What data reveals about the future of telehealth after the pandemic

For most patients, it is safe to return to in-person provider visits, leaving many to wonder what the outlook of telehealth is. Research suggests telehealth is a vital aspect of healthcare, according to a March 28 article published by The Wall Street Journal.

Five things research shows about telehealth's potential post-pandemic:

  1. About a third of new-patient visits are using telemedicine at Palo Alto, Calif.-based Stanford Healthcare. Close to 75 percent of patients who completed a video visit report that they are very likely or extremely likely to choose a video consult over an in-person visit.

  2. At Stanford Healthcare, 95 percent of psychiatry visits were remote between Sept. 1, 2020, and March 20, 2021. This was followed by endocrinology (89 percent), infectious disease (78 percent) and pain management (74 percent).

  3. Cleveland Clinic is expecting 20 percent of visits to remain remote in 2021, while 30 to 40 percent remain remote at Stanford Healthcare despite the system resuming in-person visits.

  4. In a survey of 1,594 physicians from July to August 2020, 73 percent said they would like to continue using telemedicine to conduct chronic-disease management appointments after COVID-19, followed by medical management (64 percent), care coordination (60 percent) and preventive care (53 percent).

  5. The top challenge physicians face to continuing telehealth after the pandemic is low or no reimbursement, 73 percent of physicians surveyed said, followed by technology problems for patients (64 percent) and liability (33 percent).

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